Service needs assessment of employment-related soft skills for transition age youth with disabilities

Weili Lu, Janice Oursler, Ni Gao, Samantha J. Herrick, Jake Mariani, Crystal Socha, John Beninato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Work-related soft skills can be an important factor for successful employment outcomes, particularly for individuals with disabilities. OBJECTIVE: This study conducted a survey on the needs of important work-related soft skills for employment success of transition age youth with disabilities. METHODS: 183 participants included 27 individuals with disabilities, 32 family members of individuals with disabilities,35 disability service providers, 47 disability advocates and 42 employers, completed surveys to identify a list of soft skills by importance for transition age youth with disabilities to succeed at work. RESULTS: All five groups noted the top two skills: asking for help and responding to feedback, as most important. Employers also rated interview skills as third most important skills, while the other four groups advocated requesting for accommodations and negotiating conflicts as the third and fourth most important skills. CONCLUSIONS: Findings indicated soft skills being critical to work success for transition age youth with disabilities, with some skills potentially being more important. Vocational counseling implications were discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-79
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Volume56
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Rehabilitation
  • Occupational Therapy

Keywords

  • Employment
  • Needs survey
  • Soft skills
  • Transition age youth

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